February 14, 2005

BETTER, NOT NEW:

Review finds effective post-9/11 tactics: Though some South Florida immigrants are worried by what they perceive as new enforcement tactics, a Herald review suggests a more systematic use of older methods. (JACQUELINE CHARLES AND ALFONSO CHARDY, 2/14/05, Miami Herald)

Anxiety has been on the rise in South Florida immigrant communities over the past few months about what many immigrants and their advocates perceive as more aggressive government tactics against those in the U.S. illegally.

According to some, law enforcement officers have started stopping people at random and arresting them if they have no immigration papers -- on buses, trains and roads. But immigration officials insist they are not doing anything significantly different than they have been doing since the 9/11 terrorism attacks, when scrutiny of foreigners increased.

A Herald review shows no significant new enforcement in the past few months. But tactics that went into effect after the attacks -- between late 2001 and throughout 2002 and 2003 -- have become systematic and more effective, making them more evident:

• U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents are more systematically tracking down foreign nationals who allegedly have gone into hiding after immigration judges order their deportation.

• Border Patrol officers have arrested more undocumented migrants in periodic operations on interstate buses and trains and airport terminals -- though overall fewer migrants have been arrested by Border Patrol agents in the Miami sector in recent years.

• Local police officers are more frequently summoning immigration agents when a driver's name pops up on a computer list of foreign nationals wanted by immigration for evading deportation orders -- the so-called absconders.


Seems fairly basic that once you get here you should follow the law if you don't want to be noticed.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 14, 2005 7:05 AM
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